Stucco is a popular siding option that provides a natural stone appearance and a high degree of durability to your home. However, like all building materials, it needs to be properly taken care of to ensure that it remains strong and unmarred over time despite extensive weather exposure. Here are a few things that you can do and that you should avoid to help ensure that your stucco siding stays in the best shape possible.
To clean stucco siding, first you should rinse the entire wall with a garden hose, using a low pressure stream. This prevents the stucco from absorbing dirty water, which can negate all of your cleaning efforts.
Then, switch your hose to a jet or high pressure setting, and spray down the visibly dirty areas of your wall. This should remove most of the dirt and grime that is stuck on your stucco. Take care to stand a few feet away from your siding, as standing too closely can cause increased wear to the stucco.
For stubborn stains or dirt that cannot be removed with the hose, you should use a mixture of trisodium phosphate (can be found at most hardware stores) and warm water. Always follow the directions on the container – trisodium phosphate (TSP) is a powerful cleaning material, and can cause damage to your stucco if used in excess. Simply apply the mixture to the dirty area in question using a stiff bristled brush to clean. After cleaning, be sure to thoroughly rinse the entirety of your stucco siding to remove any loose dirt particles or cleaning product remnants which may remain on the surface.
Mold can be removed from stucco siding using a mixture of household bleach and warm water (use one part of bleach to three parts of water to prevent removing the color from your stucco). When working with bleach, take care to use safety gloves and goggles. Scrub the area with a sponge or brush, and rinse it afterwards to remove any bleach that may still be on the wall.
Things to Avoid
You should avoid using chemical cleaning materials, as they can cause the color to be removed from your siding. Furthermore, soap and household detergents should be avoided as they can leave a scummy residue on your siding that can be hard to remove. Lastly, never use a pressure washer on stucco siding, as this could cause increased wear or damage to your siding.
For professional help, talk to a company like ProCon Exteriors.